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Help with designing for Photo-etch


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I'm not sure if this is the right place, if not, the mods can put me in the right place.

I'm wanting to draw some davits and other stuff for a 1/350 build and although I'm happy in drawing it, I have no idea as to special limitations/requirements for photo-etch, like depth/width of fold lines, etch gates (or whatever they're called. Whatever I design I'm hoping that it'll be good enough to print by proper people.

 

Stuart

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  • Courageous changed the title to Help with designing for Photo-etch

I had a go at designing a PE sheet for a 1/200th WW2 destroyer about a year ago and found the guidance offered by PPD Ltd in Argyll for the process comprehensive, clear and workable.  Perhaps start by looking at:

 

https://www.ppdltd.com/artwork-guide.html

 

It does require using vector drawing and I used Inkscape which is free to download and worked through the necessary tutorial lessons reasonably quickly.

 

PPD give a check off list of what they need to have sent to them and apart from some minor corrections they accepted my first offering design very quickly and had done the etching well within the stated time.  I was very pleased with the result which worked exactly as planned when fitted to the model and I plan to use them again.

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3 hours ago, Francis Macnaughton said:

I had a go at designing a PE sheet for a 1/200th WW2 destroyer about a year ago

Thanks for the info Farancis, much appreciated.

 

Stuart

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  • 2 months later...

Although it's been a long old time I did design a set of custom etch for two models. One set was for a Space 1999 Eagle Transporter that included foldable parts to support more detailed landing gear along with features to enable the command module to attach to the main body. I designed the parts using Adobe Illustrator with the folding lines highlighted in red. When the file was sent for printing the red areas would be 'half-etched' in much the way that detail would be added and this supported the fold. The thickness of the metal (whether brass or nickel) was also a bit trial and error. I also designed and printed a complete set of etch to replace the entire superstructure framework on the old MPC Black Hole USS Cygnus. Now 'that' was expensive! The company I used was the 4D Model Shop based in Whitechapel in London who support a lot of bespoke workings including photo-etch and resin casting and they did a fantastic job in helping me turn my initial plans into useable parts.

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